Don't be nice, be niche!
We all know finding new clients can be a tough operation. But saying “no” to a potential client can be even tougher. Also, why the heck would you want to do that? Perhaps because, the pickier you are, the more money you potentially stand to earn.
As much as this idea can feel like you’re pigeonholing yourself, by limiting the scope of your service, you will build your prowess much faster than someone whose focus is general. If you are trying to sniff out the money, the most profitable niches are always ones that serve new market opportunities, or lie in the gaps where existing professionals are not responding to a particular consumer needs.
Here are 3 questions to ponder over to help you find your niche:
1. Your Skills:
Take the time to have a close inspection of where your skills are and what projects that you’ve done to date that have worked well. It’s all to easy to take on projects that lie on the edge of your skill set rather than your core competence. Work out what you do better than others and focus on those.
2. Your Passion:
What work or projects have you worked on where time seems to fly by? Which ones do you wake up excited to get stuck into? These will help you find the clues as to where your true passion within your general area is. Go after more of these. On the flipside, take the time to analyse the projects you’ve found stressful or have left you feeling like you can’t wait for them to be over. Don’t keep doing these. It will suck all your energy, motivation and quite possibly your reputation.
3. Market Viability:
Are there enough projects out there to survive? Are people willing to pay you for your expertise? What competition do you have? You need to determine whether your own niche is well, too niche! And indeed whether it’s a growing area that you can build your business around, or just a fad that will be out of fashion (and leave you out of cash) in 12 month’s time.
The next time you feel like a little fish attempting an upstream swim, whose sweat is not translating into roe, or rather, hard cash - find yourself a nice, snug, little corner of the market.
With less competition, more easily identifiable clients, and a happier you, you can enjoy being the fatter fish in the smaller pond for once. Find out what your speciality is, and stop spreading your caviar (or self!) too thin!